This chapter introduces the 2001 and 2013 Church Times surveys and discusses the advantages and disadvantages of using the readers of this newspaper to survey opinions in the Church of England. It then compares the demographic profiles of the laity and clergy in the survey samples at the two points in time. In both groups, there was a marked increase in the age profile between the surveys, which is in line with what we know from other studies and official statistics. On average, the Church of England is getting older and this emerges in the survey data, even given the relatively short span of time between the two surveys. Appendix 2.1 describes in more detail the analytical method applied in Chapters 3–10 and explains how to interpret the graphical reporting of the results.
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